‘Spain banning entry to Gibraltar to pressure Britain?’ MP probes Spanish ‘stunts’

Spain: James Cleverly is asked about Gibraltar entry ‘stunts’

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In light of the seven rounds of negotiations the UK has been having with European Commission regarding future relationship between the UK and EU, Minister of State of Europe and North America James Cleverly has told MP David Jones that “the UK and Spain speak very frankly and friendly” and “has not picked in his conversation with Spain any toughening in the Spanish approach” and in regards to British citizens’ ability to enter Spain at the border with Gibraltar.

Speaking to Mr Cleverly, Mr Jones said: “We have had reports recently of British citizens being refused entry to Spain at the border with Gibraltar as they cannot provide valid reason for entry.

“Is this the toughening of Spanish approach trying to put more pressure in the British side in the negotiations?”

Mr Jones responded: “That is not the tone that I am picking up from the conversations that I have had.

“I have not seen those specific reports.

“People crossing borders on occasions have difficulties that are undesirable but the byproduct of the administrative processes that have at borders.

“I have not seen those specific reports so I would not go further on that”.

Mr Jones also asked: “Have you been notified by any changes in policy by the Spanish in terms of admission of British citizens?

Mr Cleverly replied: “Not that has been brought to my attention, neither by our side or by the Spanish.

“The conversation that I have had with Spain, we speak frankly and in a very friendly manner.

He concluded: “I am not detecting anything that would lead me to believe that there is a formal toughening of their position”.

Director General for Europe at the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office Julia Braithwaite also was in the room together with Mr Cleverly, and added: “We have had seven rounds of negotiations with the European Commission.

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“The bases for the negotiations are the joint agreement between the UK and Spain, reached at the end of 2020.

“The rounds have cleared away the rest.

“And the nub is the issue around mobility.”

Mr Braithwaite concluded: “And particularly implementing the agreement between us and the Spanish about how the Schengen Agreement would work”. 

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